Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Articles written by Richard Jenkins

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  • County board OKs Germania Hill land purchase

    Richard Jenkins|Apr 1, 2021

    HURLEY — They may never need it, but Iron County will be able to build a new route to its communication tower on Germania Hill in Hurley after the Iron County Board of Supervisors voted 13-2 to approve a land purchase Tuesday. Supervisors Larry Youngs and Karl Krall voted against the measure. The board approved purchasing a pair of lots, including 127 Germania St., from Kenneth Tilton for $10,500. The purchase is viewed as a preventative measure, according to several board members, if there are further issues with a different property owner w...

  • Agreement reached in former fire chief's case

    Richard Jenkins|Mar 31, 2021

    HURLEY — It appears the criminal case against a former chief of the Hurley Volunteer Fire Department is nearing a conclusion after a deferred prosecution agreement was accepted in the case Monday. Darrell J. Petrusha, 56, was charged with one count of identity theft related to his alleged improper use of a fire department credit card for personal expenses. Monday’s agreement means special prosecutor Allen Brey will dismiss the case if Petrusha meets certain requirements, including avoiding any new criminal charges for the next six months. It...

  • State gives COVID survival grants to Gogebic, Ontonagon businesses

    Richard Jenkins|Mar 4, 2021

    Businesses in Gogebic and Ontonagon counties have received more than $175,000 in grant money through the Michigan Small Business Survival Grant Program, the state recently announced. Twenty-five businesses in Gogebic County received a total of $125,876 in grant funding, according to information from InvestUP, and eight Ontonagon County businesses received a total of $52,250. InvestUP was the economic development organization responsible for administering the grants in the Upper Peninsula. “The Michigan Small Businesses Survival Grant Program p...

  • Montreal council seeks grant surveys

    Richard Jenkins|Feb 12, 2021

    MONTREAL, Wis. — With $1 million in grant funding on the line, the Montreal City Council decided Tuesday to make a final effort to collect the remaining income surveys needed to qualify for Community Development Block Grant funding. “Right now, we’re very close to having three of the four streets we looked at being qualified. I think we only needed eight more surveys to be completed,” said Art Bahr, with the city’s engineering firm, who appeared at the meeting via telephone. The income surveys are needed to determine whether the project a...

  • MSP distributes donations to local pantries

    Richard Jenkins|Dec 17, 2020

    WAKEFIELD - Several local food pantries got an early Christmas gift Tuesday as the Michigan State Police's Wakefield Post distributed the goods collected during the post's annual Harvest Gathering food drive. "Just before Christmas, I think the pantries are going to be well supplied for the people who need it," said Lt. Donald Horn, commander of the Wakefield post. The post's food drive, in partnership with Super One, raised over 20,000 pounds of food for food pantries in Ironwood, Bessemer and... Full story

  • County board opts against Zoom, will record meetings

    Richard Jenkins|Dec 17, 2020

    HURLEY — The Iron County Board of Supervisors and its various committees will continue to meet in person, while giving individuals an opportunity to attend remotely, after a motion to switch entirely to Zoom meetings failed to get enough support for a vote Tuesday. Supervisor Anne McComas proposed the switch to completely remote meetings due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, saying she didn’t think it was safe for the county board and its committees to meet in the boardroom in the county courthouse. “Having been elected by the people of the...

  • Gogebic County tops 20 COVID deaths

    Richard Jenkins|Nov 25, 2020

    HANCOCK — More than 20 people in Gogebic County have died related to the coronavirus pandemic, the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department reported Monday, as local health officials continue to work to limit the spread of the virus. There have been a total of 21 deaths in the county related to COVID-19 since the virus was first detected locally in March, according to the WUPHD’s Monday update, with a total of 51 deaths in the five-county region the health department serves. Gogebic County has had 524 positive cases and an additional 207 pro... Full story

  • Iron County giving tree trimmed to help collect Christmas donations

    Richard Jenkins|Nov 25, 2020

    HURLEY - Several local groups are partnering together to help provide Christmas gifts for those young people in Iron County in need. Northern Iron County Engaged Residents - along with the city of Hurley and the Iron County Human Services Department - have organized a giving tree where people can find out what gifts to donate. "Children in Iron County need Christmas gifts and this year has been difficult for many families. What are the youth asking for? Jeans, leggings, T-shirts and hats,... Full story

  • Fatal accident temporarily closes US 51

    Richard Jenkins|Oct 3, 2020

    HURLEY — A fatal car accident temporarily closed a section of U.S. 51 in northern Iron County Thursday evening. The Iron County Sheriff’s Office received a call about the three-vehicle crash on U.S. 51 near Spruce Road just south of Hurley at approximately 5:01 p.m., Sheriff Paul Samardich told the Daily Globe. Samardich said Friday morning the crash resulted in one fatality. The person was initially transported by ambulance to Aspirus Ironwood Hospital, and later flown to Aspirus Hospital in Wausau, where she died as a result of her injuries.... Full story

  • White Pine man pleads to federal drug charge

    Richard Jenkins|Oct 2, 2020

    GRAND RAPIDS — A plea agreement has been reached in the case of a White Pine man facing federal drug charges. Jesse James Monville, 46, pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine in federal court in Grand Rapids Sept. 22 as part of an agreement that will have five other charges dismissed at his sentencing. Monville was arrested during a traffic stop in Wakefield on Dec. 17, 2019, at the end of a Gogebic Iron Area Narcotics Team investigation that began in August of that year, which included s...

  • Iron County board passes anti-hate statement

    Richard Jenkins|Oct 1, 2020

    HURLEY — For much of their tenure, the teen members of the Iron County Youth Leadership Council who sit on the Iron County Board of Supervisors have taken a smaller role in meetings — listening to discussions and voting at the appropriate times. On Tuesday, however, the county board passed a statement the youth leadership council played a key role in developing. The Iron County Board of Supervisors Statement of Community Integrity and Respect highlights that Iron County is a great place and a community that takes pride in “small town values” su... Full story

  • Local groups plan virtual races across region

    Richard Jenkins|Sep 19, 2020

    IRONWOOD - With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic preventing large in-person gatherings, two Gogebic Range organizations are hosting virtual versions of their annual races. Both the organizers of the Bridges and Bluffs half marathon and Copper Peak Trails Fest are hoping the community comes out to support the virtual events this year as they are the biggest fundraisers of the year for the Friends of the Iron Belle Trail and Sisu Dirt Crew respectively. Rather than completing the race on a single...

  • Saxon Harbor campground opening announced

    Richard Jenkins|Aug 14, 2020

    SAXON, Wis. - For the first time since the former location was flooded in the July 2016 storm, people will be able to camp at Saxon Harbor's campground today. Although the campground is only scheduled to open for the weekend before closing to allow for some final work to be done, the plan is to reopen for the season Thursday. "It will be nice to see a full facility again," said Eric Peterson, Iron County's forestry and parks administrator. The campground opens today at 4 p.m., on a first-come,...

  • COVID case numbers grow

    Richard Jenkins|Jul 21, 2020

    HURLEY — As the number of local COVID-19 cases continues to rise, the Iron County Health Department announced it is partnering with the Wisconsin National Guard to increase the availability of COVID-19 testing in Iron County later this week. There are a pair of testing events planned, with one scheduled in Hurley and a second in Mercer. The Hurley event will take place from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday at the Hurley K-12 School and the Mercer event will be from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday at the Department of Natural Resources Ranger Station at 5...

  • Ironwood Township limits cash payments as COVID-19 precaution

    Richard Jenkins|Jul 18, 2020

    IRONWOOD TOWNSHIP — The Ironwood Township Board of Trustees moved to restrict cash payments at the township hall Monday as part of the township’s ongoing efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic. Along with closing the office to walk-in traffic, township officials expressed concern that the need to handle cash increased the risk of catching the coronavirus. The number of cash payments had decreased at the beginning of the pandemic, according to township officials, but had been increasing in recent weeks. “Right now, people want to pay their...

  • Ironwood district looks to establish foundation, plan meeting for July 30

    Richard Jenkins|Jul 17, 2020

    IRONWOOD — The leaders of the Ironwood Area Schools are looking for members of the community interested in joining a foundation being created later this summer that will be affiliated with the district, with an informational meeting about the effort set for July 30. The foundation would be similar to the Hurley Education Foundation and provide a way for alumni and families to make donations to help the district purchase items that aren’t feasible to include in Ironwood’s annual budget. “This would supplement (the district’s annual budget),...

  • Montreal looks to fill 2 council seats

    Richard Jenkins|Jun 11, 2020

    MONTREAL, Wis. — There will be some new faces on the Montreal council after two of its members resigned recently. Montreal Mayor Erik Guenard said at Tuesday’s council meeting that the city received letters of resignation from Rick Swartz and Joan Levra. The resignations were effective Monday, according to Guenard after he read the letters “I would like to thank them for their service. Joan has been on for quite a long time, and Rick was appointed, and I appreciate the work both of them did,” Guenard said. “I’m sorry to see them leave and I...

  • Potential cuts threaten future of education

    Richard Jenkins|Jun 4, 2020

    IRONWOOD — Local education officials warn that the Western Upper Peninsula could face disastrous consequences if nothing is done to prevent the state from slashing the amount districts receive in per-pupil funding. Officials told the Daily Globe that if the drastic cuts are imposed, local districts would have to go beyond the normal measures taken in tough times — from the elimination of electives and school-sponsored sports to layoffs and possibly even state takeovers. “These are generational decisions that are going to absolutely affec...

  • Forestry Committee approves Schomberg paving improvements

    Richard Jenkins|May 21, 2020

    HURLEY — The Iron County Forestry and Parks Committee decided improvements to Schomberg Park were the best way to honor the memory of Thomas E. Popko, voting Monday to send a bid to pave the park’s gravel areas to the full county board. A former member of the Iron County Board of Supervisors and Forestry and Parks Committee member, Popko died Jan. 7. According to information presented at Monday’s meeting, he left the county a total of $56,150 when he died. “His request, when he came in and made these changes to his policies last summer was he... Full story

  • Missing child found near McDonald Dam

    Richard Jenkins|May 21, 2020

    ERWIN TOWNSHIP — A child who had been reported missing from a campsite near McDonald Dam Tuesday was located later that same day. The Gogebic County Sheriff’s Department received a report of a missing 4-year-old at approximately 10 a.m. Tuesday, according to Sheriff Pete Matonich. Matonich said the child’s mother had reported her son was playing with other children near the campsite and had possibly wandered off. GCSD deputies, along with troopers from the Michigan State Police’s Wakefield Post and members of Gogebic County Search and Rescue,...

  • Ironwood offers families chance to get items still at LLW

    Richard Jenkins|May 8, 2020

    IRONWOOD — With the in-person school year ending abruptly in March due to the corornavirus pandemic, many Ironwood students were unable to clean out their lockers or say goodbye to teachers. The district is planning a series of collection events next week to allow families to get the items that were unexpectedly left at school until now. So far, three pick-up events are planned for Monday and Tuesday for students in kindergarten through sixth grade. “It’s been a long time, but our hands have been tied until this point,” K-12 Principal Melissa...

  • Local schools work on graduation plans

    Richard Jenkins|Apr 18, 2020

    With the remainder of the school year now canceled in both Michigan and Wisconsin due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, area seniors and their families await information on what the new plan for their graduation ceremonies will be. Although many of the area’s school districts are still developing graduation plans, the local superintendents expressed a desire to honor their graduating seniors in some way -- even if the final form is still unclear. “We’re trying to figure out ways to help honor and recognize our seniors for their hard work...

  • Iron County declares a state of emergency

    Richard Jenkins|Mar 17, 2020

    HURLEY — Following the declaration of a state of emergency, the Iron County Board of Supervisors approved a resolution regarding COVID-19, or the coronavirus pandemic, Monday. After Iron County Board Chairman Joe Pinardi declared a state of emergency, the board passed a resolution “providing county administration emergency administrative flexibility in responding to COVID-19.” The resolution allows Pinardi — in consultation with a newly formed administrative committee — to take actions needed to respond to the pandemic, with the resolution list...

  • Community comes out to Hygge Hike

    Richard Jenkins|Mar 2, 2020

    MONTREAL, Wis. - The difference in weather from last year's event was reflected in the turnout, as almost 60 people came out to the second annual Hygge Hike at the Montreal Ski Trails Saturday. "Last year, there was a 30-below wind chill; this year, I think it's 37 (degrees) today," said Rebecca Holm, one of the Northern Iron County Engaged Residents members who helped organize the hike. "A huge difference that brought more people - we went from having five participants last year to having...

  • Turkey dinner raises funds for Kimball VFD

    Richard Jenkins|Mar 2, 2020

    KIMBALL, Wis. - The line stretched out the door and into the parking lot of the Kimball Community Center at one point, as residents came out to support the Kimball Volunteer Fire Department's annual turkey dinner Sunday. Organizers were pleased with the turnout, estimating at least 700 people bought tickets to the dinner, either showing up in person, placing take-out orders or having meals delivered. "Even with the line out to the sidewalk there were still open seats, so there was a good flow,"...

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